22/52 Continuing priority research topics of interest to the PHR Programme

National Institute for Health and Care Research

The Public Health Research Programme are accepting stage 1 applications to their commissioned workstream for this topic.

For this call, we wish to draw your attention to the following commissioning briefs that we have previously advertised. These represent enduring gaps in our portfolio that we would like to fill with high quality research.

In future, commissioned calls against which we have failed to fund sufficient research will remain open and highlighted on this page, in order to stimulate research activity in these areas of need. If you have ideas, we would like to hear from you and can offer early, informal feedback on your proposed research to advise on its fit with the call and the PHR Programme. Please email phr@nihr.ac.uk.

How to apply

In order to apply you will need to carefully review the following commissioning briefs:

18/72 Gang violence and gang related harms to health -The following highlight notice complements this brief.

NIHR PHR Programme Highlight Notice for UK government-funded Violence Reduction Units

Tackling Violent Crime is a government priority. Recent Home Office and Crime Survey reported figures show a rising upward trend in violent offences involving knives/sharp instruments and homicide over the last couple of years in England and Wales. In August 2019, the UK government awarded 18 Police and Crime Commissioners, £35m from the ring-fenced £100m Serious Violence Fund, to set-up a number of specialist Violence Reduction Units to tackle violent crime in their areas, areas which are the worst affected by violent crime. These units bring together different organisations, including the police, local government, health and community leaders and other key partners to identify the driving causes of violent crime and issue a coordinated, whole-system, preventative approach to tackle serious violent crime through both short and long-term strategies.

The NIHR Public Health Research Programme invites proposals for research to evaluate the effectiveness of one or more of the Violence Reduction Units in reducing serious violent crime and their wider impact on public health and health inequalities as they are established, and their work embedded, in their various geographically- dispersed locations. Applicants must demonstrate that they are working with leaders and partners who are supporting these units. Research should plan to assess and evaluate the short and long term impacts of these units and implementation of their approach/interventions on the behaviour of violent offenders, health and wellbeing of the local population, community engagement and resilience, and the actual and perceived safety of the environment in which people live. The economic impact, across the whole health and social care, crime and education systems is of interest.

Others briefs of continuing priority:


If you are interested in applying for one of these funding opportunities, please refer to the relevant commissioning brief in your Stage 1 application form (section 2 of the Research plan). However, please bear in mind that the commissioning briefs, along with the underpinning literature searches, have not been updated since originally written.

Assessment dates

Proposals received by 1pm on 16 August 2022, and deemed within remit, will be assessed for their importance to public health by the Prioritisation Committee (PC) in September 2022.

Shortlisted stage 1 applications from this round will be considered by the Funding Committee (FC) in October 2022, and assessed for scientific quality, feasibility and value for money. Applicants will be informed of the FC’s decisions in late October 2022, and successful applicants will be invited to submit a stage 2 application. Applicants have eight weeks to complete and submit a stage 2 application for it to be considered at the February 2023 Funding Committee.

Please note: If a very high response is received, some stage 1 applications may not be taken forward for further assessment if they are deemed to be non-competitive and/or it may be necessary to defer some stage 1 applications until a later date. ‘Non-Competitive’ means that a proposal is not of a sufficiently high standard to be taken forward for further assessment in comparison with other proposals received and funded by the PHR Programme because it has little or no realistic prospect of funding. This may be because of scientific quality, cost, scale/duration, or the makeup of the project team.

All primary research projects are expected to establish a programme appointed Study/Trial Steering Committee and it is important that you read the TSC/SSC Guidance before completing your application. Costs incurred by this committee should be included in the budget as appropriate.




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